Our habits and interests are changing the shape of the self storage industry
Demand for self storage space has never been higher. According to research carried out by Cushman & Wakefield and the Self Storage Association UK in 2016, occupancy rates for UK self storage facilities grew by 4% and 1.9 million square feet of new storage space was constructed in 2015.
The growth in demand for self storage can be traced back to a number of factors, all of which relate to the way we live our lives today. For example:
- Over the last decade, there has been a rapid increase in the number of self employed people entering the workforce (the level of self-employment in the UK increased from 3.8 million in 2008 to 4.6 million in 2015). With home office conversions on the rise, more and more people are choosing to put their personal belongings into storage to make room for a work area, instead of selling their items or sending them to landfill.
- The state of the housing market is also having an impact. It now takes longer for people to get onto the property ladder and all the while they are amassing more and more belongings. With the growth in long term renting, there has been a proportionate increase in demand for self storage, with more people searching for locations to store their excess things.
- The media is having an impact on the industry as well. Due to the popularity of TV shows like Bargain Hunt and the Antiques Roadshow, the public has become better educated about investing in art and antiquities. And instead of risking the theft of a valuable object, or having to find a place for an item only really bought as an investment, more and more people are opting to store their precious items in self storage units.
- House makeover programmes have also had an effect on a whole generation of home owners. People nowadays want to showcase different styles in their homes, without permanently getting rid of any furniture. The lucky few can find some space in their properties to store these items temporarily, but most people do not have that option. Instead, they might put their possessions into storage and bring them back out again as styles go full circle.
- The so-called ‘Boomerang generation’ has caused an increase in demand for self storage as well. In the past, children would often leave home in their early twenties. Now, it is not unusual for people to leave the parental home until they are in their mid thirties. When parents find their adult offspring’s possessions are filling up their space, it is not surprising that they use storage facilities to hide it all away.
- Finally, there are also just regular life changes like moving house, entering into a new relationship, leaving a relationship, selling a home or having a baby.
Taken together, (and there are many more reasons of course) these factors partially explain the public’s growing appetite for self storage. And as the world becomes even more fast-paced and our interests continue to shift, it seems likely that demand for this simple and convenient solution will remain high.
Not sure where to safely store your belongings? If you are looking for a trustworthy self storage company, please contact our highly reputable team and we’ll meet with you to talk you through how we can help.We are always happy to hear from you if you have any questions →